Life moves fast, and as our lives become busier and busier, it becomes more important than ever that we disconnect, de-stress, and get away from our day to day routine in order to avoid burnout. We can’t always plan our trips months in advance. When we feel our thermometer rising to a breaking point and we know we just need to get out of Dodge, a last-minute getaway can be the perfect solution. Here’s how to make that happen.
Book a Flight
One of the toughest parts of planning a last-minute getaway is booking your flight. The longer you wait, the worse the selection and the higher the prices. Thankfully, there are plenty of great online resources you can look to for guidance when it’s late in the game and you’re still without airfare. Sign up for newsletters that notify you of inexpensive flights, such as Scott’s Cheap Flights or Jack’s Flight Club. That way, you can let the deals come to you and pounce on the one you like. If you use Twitter, there are accounts you can follow that post last-minute flight deals, like The Flight Deal (@TheFlightDeal) and Airfarewatchdog (@airfarewatchdog) while you can also monitor your feed for hashtags like #Airfare and #Flights. Online, Google Flights, Momondo, and Kayak are ideal for finding flights leaving in the near future, and on your phone, apps like DealRay can deliver a gem right to your pocket.
Renew Your Passport
This one is literally a deal breaker… or a trip killer. No passport? No travel. When you need to renew your passport, like, yesterday, there is a useful app called ItsEasy that can help you move that process along rapidly. The beauty? You get to take your own passport photo! (Still, remember: no smiling.) American citizens can cut out the long lines at the post office and get the ball rolling with just a few taps on a mobile device. you can take your new picture, pay with your credit card, and track your passport shipment, all within the app – and it’s all government approved. Last-minute trip, saved.
Maximize Vacation Time
When planning a trip on short notice, it’s important to minimize preparation time and maximize vacation time. There are several ways you can kill those two birds with one stone. If you’re like us, putting your suitcase together can take way longer than it should. We can all use a little help, so we suggest the GetPacked app to help you with this stressful endeavor. The app will ask you a few simple questions, and your answers will help it generate a packing checklist so you don’t forget a thing. Go a step further with a luxury travel valet app called DUFL aiming to revolutionize travel attire. With DUFL, you virtually pack a bag on your phone, and the company cleans, packs and sends your clothes directly to your destination. And it should be no surprise that there’s time to be saved at the airport too. Traveling within North America? Sign up for Nexus to avoid long cross-border waits, skip lines, and move through security faster. By saving time at home and at the airport, you’ll have more time to enjoy yourself and do the things that really matter, like relaxing!
Learn the Language
You just booked a trip to a foreign land and you have yet to learn the language! What do you do? Thankfully, there are some great apps to help you pick up the basics of just about any language fast. Duolingo is free and allows you to practice having conversations in your new dialect. Memrise uses fun quizzes, playful images, and native-tongue videos to guide you through adventures and missions in order to learn the language. You’ll have the important phrases – Dos cervezas por favor – down in no time, and you’ll impress all the locals, not to mention your travel companions!
Find a Place to Stay
Though your first instinct might be to book a hotel, it can be difficult to find one in the right location and with everything you need when you try and book at the last minute, especially if you’re traveling in a group. A vacation rental can be a great choice for a last-minute vacation, and that’s where our Last Call program comes in. If you’re flexible about your destination, choosing from our exclusive list of premium properties, booking within a month of your trip can mean a discount of up to 35% without losing any luxury features and amenities. Right now, we’re loving the luxurious Villa Mimmi in Tuscany’s countryside, where you can enjoy 20% off your stay ending on or before May 16, 2017. With Luxury Retreats, the best time to plan a last-minute getaway is now!